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How to sight in a pistol?

Discussion in 'Handguns: Autoloaders' started by Soybomb, Apr 11, 2006.

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  1. Soybomb

    Soybomb Member

    Oct 31, 2005
    Anyone have a good walk through of sighting in a pistol? My new .22 pistol is shooting high and to the left it seems which isn't really a problem I see from my shooting normally. Just run a bullseye target out to like 10 yards, toss a sandbag on the bench, rest part of the gun on the bag, kneel down and shoot and adjust accordingly?
  2. isp2605

    isp2605 Member

    May 6, 2004
    Give the bore a good cleaning. Try different makes of ammo. See then if POI changes.
  3. Sport45

    Sport45 Member

    Mar 5, 2004
    Houston, TX
    Try laying your wrists on the bag with a somewhat firm two-handed grip in the pistol. I've found my accuracy to improve quite a bit if no part of the handgun touches the bag or bench. The point of impact changes too. YMMV
    Last edited: Apr 11, 2006
  4. Deanimator

    Deanimator Member

    Mar 30, 2006
    Rocky River, Ohio
    +1 on not resting the gun itself on anything. Put down a bag and rest your hands on that.

    As for the actual zeroing process, don't "chase" the zero around the target. Zero the way you zero a rifle. Don't touch your sights until you've fired a three round group. Then adjust your sights so that the center of the group is moved to your desired point of impact. Repeat until zeroed. This should be highly effective unless there's some other factor in play, like loose sights or a dirty gun.
  5. Jim_M

    Jim_M Member

    Mar 3, 2006
    Arizona Desert
    I check my trigger work with new pistols frequently. I'll load a snap cap in one of the magazines. Scuffle them around and load one randomly. More times than not I discover a "throttle control issue" that affects POI.
  6. marklbucla

    marklbucla Member

    Jan 13, 2003
    Los Angeles
    I'd strongly suggest a LaserLyte Boresighter from Walmart. They're about $45.

    I use them with all my guns whose barrels are long enough for it. It lets me know with really good confidence whether it's me or the sights that are off.
  7. johnny blaze

    johnny blaze Member

    Mar 2, 2006
    I borrowed a laser lyte bore sighter from a friend.
    I used in on several rifles and one pistol. It is unbelievable how close it is on the paper after using the laser to sight it in. Saved me alot of time and money in ammunition.
    I am going to buy one.:D
  8. Steve C

    Steve C Member

    Jan 5, 2006
    That's pretty much it. A few suggestions. A bullseye target should be set at the distance it was intended to be shot at, IE 25 yds, 50 ft or whatever the target says. Shooting at it too close makes the bull too large for a proper sight picture. If you're going to sight your pistol in at 10 yds use one of those 1" orange or black stick on targets.

    1. From your rest fire at least 2 shots, the shots should be together on the target. If not check the sights or scope to make sure they're on tight and not moving from shot to shot. If the sights are on tight and shots are scattered then work on your techniquel Check the error correction target below for a right handed shooter. For a left handed shooter mirror the problems.

    2. When making sight adjustments always go forward one extra click and then back one, this should take out any play in the sight you could get from making the adjustments.

    It shouldn't take much more than 10 rounds to get the pistol sighted in.
  9. Boom-stick

    Boom-stick Member

    Oct 4, 2005
    If it's a brand new pistol put about 400 rounds down it before trying to zero it, to run the barrel in.
    I picked up a new browning buckmark 2 weeks ago and every 100 rounds down the barrel it tightens up a bit more.
    I sand bagged mine first off, but 50 rounds later and a different type of ammo, the zero shifted and had to be re-set. Let the barrel calm down then zero it.

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